Clean, safe environment and physical distancing
- Mosques should only be opened 30 minutes before the obligatory prayer and closed 30 minutes after the prayer.
- Mosques should be opened one hour before Friday prayers and closed 30 minutes after the prayer.
- Urge worshipers to keep a distance of 1.5 meters between each worshiper and the other from all sides.
- The elderly and those who have chronic diseases may be allowed to pray inside the mosques while urging and advising them to better perform it at home.
- Holding lectures and lessons after prayers may be allowed with the commitment to social distancing and in line with the set timing for mosques to be open.
- Provide sufficient space at the edges of the mosque to allow the worshipers at the first rows to leave the mosque without having to pass between worshipers who are still performing the prayers.
- Hand sanitizers must be distributed throughout the mosque, if available.
- Hand sanitizer must contain 60-80% alcohol and meet the requirements of the Saudi Food and Drug General Authority (SFDA).
- Tissue boxes must be distributed throughout the mosque and placed in prominent places.
- All environmental surfaces, mosque carpet and cushions should be periodically disinfected with approved disinfectants, if possible.
- Remove books, Qur’ans, and Qur’an holders if possible, and urge worshipers to carry their personal Qur’ans with them.
- All places and surfaces should be cleaned with soap and water before disinfecting them.
- A record of the times of cleaning and disinfection of surfaces should be maintained.
- Allow toilets and ablution places in mosques to be opened, provided that a worker is designated to clean and disinfect them after each prayer.
- Follow the Practical Guide for Special Cleaning and Disinfection of Facilities issued by the Saudi Center for Disease Prevention and Control (SCDC).
- Ensure social distancing in the bathrooms by placing waiting signs and disabling one sink between every two sinks.
- Liquid soap must be provided in the bathrooms.
- Wear a medical or cloth mask, or anything that covers the mouth and nose, and perform ablution (wudu) at home, and avoidance of crowding when leaving the mosque.
- Worshipers must bring their own prayer mat to the mosque.
- Remove all water coolers, water refrigerators, and any kind of food or drinks in the mosque.
- Ensure good ventilation in the mosque; it is preferable to use natural ventilation and reduce the temperature in general, and provide artificial ventilation with natural ventilation, if possible.
- It is preferable to provide trash cans and waste baskets that are used with no touching required, and the waste must be disposed of continuously.
Symptom Monitoring and Reporting
- Follow up the health status of those in charge of the mosque by asking them about symptoms and recording their temperature on a daily basis.
- Report a case that has a high temperature or respiratory symptoms and is suspected of being infected with COVID-19, identify the case’s information and contact numbers and immediately call 937 to see the required directions to transfer the case to the hospital.
- If a confirmed case is registered among workers, the protocols approved by Weqaya Center and the MOH must be applied.
- It is preferable to establish communication channels for those in charge of mosques and worshipers to be able to report any violations of requirements or any breach of protocols in order to avoid them, and the individual responsible for them should be one of those in charge of the mosque, such as the imam or the muezzin.
- In the event that there is housing for workers in the mosque, it is preferable to prepare an isolation room for the suspected cases in their residence so that they are isolated until contacted by the competent authorities. (Please see the health conditions for workers’ housing to fight Covid-19)
Awareness and Education
- Rely on official sources to obtain information about the Corona virus (official sources include: the Ministry of Health (MOH) and the Saudi Center for Disease Prevention and Control (SCDC)).
- Allow the elderly and those who have chronic diseases to pray inside mosques.
- The Imam shall remind the worshipers, during the second call for prayer, of the necessity of social distancing by adhering to the places of the posters or signs shown on the mosque carpet or by any other means the imam may see fit.
- Urge the worshipers not to crowd at the entrances and exits of the mosques, so that in each side there is a path for entry and another for exit if there is more than one entrance.
- Awareness posters must be displayed in all entrances of the mosque and prominent places, preferably written in different languages and include the following:
- Introduction to the disease, how it spreads and the preventative measures to be taken.
- Awareness of handwashing, avoiding touching the eyes, nose and mouth before washing hands, and encourage attention to personal hygiene and health care
- Adherence to Hygiene and Cough etiquette (by using tissues and throwing them away immediately or coughing into the elbow and washing hands afterwards).
- It is preferable to create a board containing a statement of the violations and how to report it.